Authors: Kessy, Jerome Melkiory
Title: Village housing investments of multi-locational households and their spatial and environmental impacts: Case study of Kilimanjaro region, Tanzania
Language (ISO): en
Abstract: In recent years there has been a booming and unguided ‘modern’ residential housing investments in most of the villages on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. This was a phenomenon which motivated me to conduct this study in order to investigate the motives behind such investments, including the spatial and environmental challenges contribute by such investments. The idea is to conserve the nature in the villages on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, including the mountain and its forest. The literature in Tanzania has shown that there have been inadequate studies carried out in the area of multi-locality and rural-urban linkage. This implies that, there is little knowledge known about multi-locational households, including their impacts, especially those which are related to housing investments in their villages of origin. This study has revealed that, the village housing investments as a socio-cultural motive of multi-locational households which is currently booming in the villages on the slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro and of course in other villages in Tanzania is likely to, on the one hand; improve the village housing (reduce the housing poverty), increase village asset ownership, and enhance social status (prestige) at household, family and community levels. However, on the other hand and when not guided by the legal instruments and organs; it contributes to environmental challenges (e.g. over-exploitation of building materials such as timber, sand, bricks etc. causing deforestation and soil erosion) and spatial challenges (land fragmentation e.g. reduction of the farming land resulting from an excessive subdivision of the family land for housing investments). In understanding this problem, this study has employed both quantitative and qualitative approaches. The case study area (Sango Village) was the source of empirical evidence. The study has captured the socioeconomic and the qualitative data of 64 households who own ‘modern’ residential houses in Sango Village (it is one of the villages which lies on the slopes of mount Kilimanjaro). It was then followed by an in-depth interview of 8 multi-locational households who own ‘modern’ houses in Sango Village in order to capture their exceptional motives behind such investments. The information was also captured from the government officials and academics. Then, the analysis and interpretation of the data were done. The results have shown that, most of the ‘modern’ residential houses that we see in the villages on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro are because of multi-locational households. It has also been established that, there are significant and very convincing reasons/motives raised by multi-locational households on why they need to invest in ‘modern’ residential houses in their villages of origin. The motives behind such investments include: social status (prestige), event use (Christmas, Easter and burial ceremonies), culture to own a house in the village of origin, taking care of the elderly and a place to retire. This research has again shed light on the positive roles played by multi-locational households, especially in addressing the village housing poverty. It has further highlighted the spatial and environmental challenges resulting from the ‘modern’ residential housing investments in the villages on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro. The emerged challenges include: farming land transformation, scattered houses and cemeteries, accumulation of ghost houses, over exploitation of building materials causing deforestation and soil erosion. It is, therefore, argued that, in order to achieve more positive impacts than the negative ones, there are land and housing policies and institutional loopholes at the central and local government authorities that need urgent attention. For instance, the one that needs attention here include; the need of a provision of spatial planning and housing section/institution at the ward or village level. It is a hope that, this could be a better way of creating healthier and planned villages which are the towns and cities of tomorrow. This is possible if spatial planning becomes one of the central and local government priority areas. Again, this study has revealed that, the multi-locational households have positive and negative impacts in both the place of origin and destination. Thus, their inclusion in the development agenda, including in the population and housing census reports and curriculum in the universities is essential. In this way it will be easier to address their negative impacts in their villages of origin at the same time appreciate their positive impacts for the betterment of the village communities and the country at large.
Subject Headings: Village housing
Multi-locational households
Subject Headings (RSWK): Tansania
Ländlicher Raum
Issue Date: 2017
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